Watching the documentary Paragraph 175, dealing with the murder of homosexuals during the Nazi reign, it struck me again as how perverse is the ranting of the Tea Partiers and Glen Beck and others in the emotionality of their depiction of Barack Obama as Hitler. I'm a systems guy, but these folks need deep psychotherapy. Obama, the so-called Hitler, has attempted to create health-care for all. The program may be imperfect, but it is move toward inclusiveness. Sarah Palin, either in her ignorance of history or reckless demagoguery, makes regular tea party crowd-pleasing rants about separating the real people - mostly white, mostly Republican, mostly bigoted - from the "others." This is pure Hitler who was the master at deluding people into differentiating and inflating themselves at the expense of the "other" - Jews, homosexuals, the disabled, liberals, Slavs. Alice Miller makes a point in her analysis of Nazi brutality of the part played by oppressive child-rearing in which the repressed anger at the oppressor parent finds its release in the hate of the "other." There you can express hate, not with dad who you can only remember fondly. There is much misplaced hate afloat in the country. Rational disagreement with policy is political; hate is mental. There is a great opportunity for insight, for the haters to see that their fundamental problem is not with Obama.
We do not teach the art of demagoguery in leadership development curricula, yet skillful demagoguery is the anti-leadership; it looks like the real thing, but it is not. It cloaks evil - oppressing or eliminating the "other" - under the guise of some greater good.It releases hate, not love. And misdirected hate at that.